Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
The Kansas City, Missouri-based ska revival band the Gadjits was essentially a vehicle for the three Phillips brothers: vocalist/guitarist Brandon, bassist Zach and drummer Adam. The sons of a jazz musician and his art teacher wife, the siblings played music together from early childhood onward -- originally an AC/DC cover band, in time they began incorporating elements of punk, ska, reggae and swing into their sound, soon beginning to write their own material as well. The Gadjits' debut LP, Da Gravy on Yo' Grits, was issued on their own JoCo Ska label, and its local success won the group opening slots for bands including the Skatalites, Rancid and Let's Go Bowling; in time, they added keyboardist Heidi Blobaum to their ranks, replacing her a year later with Hillary Allen when Blobaum departed to attend college. Upon signing to Hellcat Records, a label spearheaded by Rancid's Tim Armstrong, the Gadjits -- their average age still just 17 -- issued At Ease in 1998. A berth on that summer's Warped package tour followed, setting the stage for 1999's Wish We Never Met.